Gunman Raoul Moat told police he was coming to get them in an emergency call minutes before he tried to kill a Northumbria Police traffic officer.

Moat told a call handler he was out hunting for officers and told them: “You will get your chance to kill me”, but declared that they would never take him alive.

Just two minutes after making the call, Moat crept up on PC David Rathband as he sat in his patrol car, in Newcastle, and shot him in the face, blinding him.

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A recording of the call made to police at 12.29am on July 4 last year was played to jurors at the trial of two men accused of helping the gunman in relation to the shooting.

Moat’s former close friend, Karl Ness, and Qhuram Awan, are on trial accused of offences including murder, conspiracy to murder and attempted murder.

Ness, who worked with Moat in his tree-felling and vehicle recovery businesses, is said to have been with Moat on the night he gunned down his former girlfriend, Samanth Stobbard and her new lover, Chris Brown, in Birtley, Gateshead.

Awan is alleged to have helped the pair afterwards and driven Moat to the junction of the A1 and A69 where he shot PC Rathband.

In the emergency call recording, Moat talks about the night before, when he opened fire on his former girlfriend, Samantha Stobbart and murdered her new lover, Chris Brown.

Moat begins the conversation by saying: “Hello there, this is the gunman from Birtley last night. What I’m phoning about is, is to tell you exactly why I have done what I have done, right?

“My girlfriend has been having an affair behind my back with one of your officers. This gentleman that I shot last night, the karate instructor, right, now I… Yous have been on to me, right, for years.

“Yous have hassled us, harassed us, yous just won’t leave us alone. I can’t drive down the street without the blue lights flashing.

“She has had an affair with one of your officers. If he had not been a police officer I would not have shot him.” Moat goes on to say he only meant to injure Stobbart but says Brown “deserved it”.

It transpired that a week before he was due to be released from Durham Prison, Stobbart had rung him to say their six-year relationship was over and lied that she was dating a policeman.

Referring to Brown, Moat says: “He deserved it, right, but she, right … you can run ballistics – I was altering those cartridges, right. That one was half the powder, that … it was meant to get her compensation because obviously I’m not going to be around in a few days, right, it was meant to just give her a little injury so she can get lots of compensation.

“Now that I have found out that she’s critical I’m not happy about it. I did not mean that.

“To be honest, I’m quite surprised she’s critical, you know.”

Despite his apparent sorrow at seriously injuring Stobbart, Moat turns defiant and says if any officers come near him he’ll kill them.

After one of the biggest manhunts this country has ever seen, Moat was cornered by police in Rothbury and shot himself dead.

Ness, of Dudley, North Tyneside, and Awan, of Blyth, North Tyneside, deny the attempted murder of Mr Rathband, conspiracy to murder, possession of a firearm and robbing a fish and chip shop.

Ness also denies the murder, by joint enterprise, of Chris Brown.

The trial, which is due to last five weeks, continues